I have been doing this soap gig for almost five years. One would think I would be calm, relaxed, and collected when it comes to in-person events, especially The Ligonier Country Market. However, that is not the case. After the initial shock, that baby season will begin in a month, during the throes of the holiday rush, and right before Christmas, I went into my quiet panic mode. There are several versions of panic mode for me. The most common is I stomp around, snapping at everyone and everything that crosses my path, I have hand tremors, belly issues, and I’m mean. The second most common is all of the above, but I cry. The last version, and often the most dangerous, is when I am quiet.
Yesterday, I was quiet. If you’ve met me in person, especially with my bib overall wearing wonder buns, you know, I’m not usually quiet. Usually, there is a lot of banter and back and forth between my husband and myself as we try to outwit the other. For the record, he always wins. Always. Yesterday, I was in no mood for banter, wit, or general smart ass shenanigans. I kept running through all the things we had to do over and over in my head. I fixate on schedules when I feel overwhelmed, so I spent the day trying to schedule all the tasks that need to be completed in a realistic time frame. As I was trying to work it all out in my head, The Bibbed Wonder kept poking at me with his verbal barbs.
I usually find my husband entertaining, humorous, sometimes all-out hilarious. Yesterday, I felt like he just kept poking the bear. He hates it when I don’t respond to the “gold” he throws at me. When I am like this, he keeps raising the bar until he gets a response. I did not respond in annoyance or aggression. I just didn’t have it in me. Instead, I focused on everything that needed to be done, that wasn’t done, and I didn’t know how I was going to get it done. Sigh. This led to question after question of, “What is wrong? Am I in trouble? Are you going to yell at me? You look like you want to yell at me. I hate it when you’re like this. What can I do to make your life better?” Sigh. He’s a good man.
To add to my overwhelmed state, The Bean has joined the school musical and is preparing to test for her blue belt in taekwondo. I’m not comfortable with her riding the activity bus from school. I have been driving the twenty minutes to the school, waiting for a half-hour because I have to be waiting if she gets out early, drive to Indiana, and return home to do homework, our nighttime routine, and housework well after bedtime. Don’t get me wrong; I’m thrilled she participates in these activities, makes new friends, challenges herself, and puts herself out there. She makes me very proud. It just adds a bit of complexity to a busy schedule, but this is what we do for our kids, right?
Just when I was dreading having to drive into Indiana, wait for an hour and a half, try to figure out how I could do so without being seen because I had not showered…yes, I’m the dirty soap lady. GramBarb comes to my rescue. I love my mother-in-law. She is so good to us. She treats me like a daughter, is an amazing GramBarb to my bean, and she gave birth to one of my favorite people. How could I not love her? The bean called to see if GramBarb could drive her to taekwondo because “mommy is quiet and stressed.” I later found out; Eric cooked up this idea to make my life easier. Again, he is a good man. So, GramBarb went out of her way to help me, help The Bean, and the cherry on top; she brought us dinner. I went from feeling stressed and overwhelmed to feeling blessed.
I’m very fortunate to have such amazing people in my life, and I appreciate them. In that extra two and half hours I spent in the studio, we got packed for Ligonier, we packed Wendy for the weekend, we put dishes away, we cleaned the truck, and by the time GramBarb and The Bean returned, we turned out the lights in the studio and enjoyed dinner. Which, by the way, I swore I would not cook, and no one would eat until Ligonier was over. Thanks for saving my husband and child from starvation, GramBarb.
Today, I feel lighter. I feel more prepared, relaxed, and relieved that we are almost ready for our market tomorrow. It will be a bit chilly, but the sun is supposed to shine, and it will be dry. The Ligonier Holiday Market is a lovely way to spend the day. It’s also an enjoyable way to support small, local handmade businesses. We will be at site 15, our usual spot, from noon to four. My advice is to come early and wait in the parking lot. This event is a good one, and it often draws a crowd. I also suggest making a day of it. Ligonier is a beautiful little town with adorable boutiques. Also, the ROTC has a craft fair at the high school, which is within walking distance of the market grounds.
My bean will be representing the market tomorrow as Peppermint the Elf. We will be down a valued, capable, adorable member of our team, but it is good for her to experience working for someone other than her parents. She is also thrilled to work with Miss Cari, Daisy Mae, and Lily Lavender. We hope to see you there.
As always, dear reader, stay safe, be smart, appreciate the good people in your life, come to the holiday market, and keep washing your hands.